Gen. 46:1-7, 28-30; Mt. 10:16-23
The readings of the day promise us one thing that we comfortably choose to overlook – tribulation. In other words, troubles are sure to come by in varying degrees – both in terms of intensity and duration, so much so that our faith will inevitably be put to test. Only a faith that has endured the test of time could merit the person eternal reward.
The first reading tells us how Jacob and his son Joseph were rewarded with a much deserved reunion after having had their faith being pushed to its very limits. Jesus, in today’s Gospel, forewarns us of the same. But he doesn’t stop with that. He promises us help; he guarantees us the Holy Spirit. All he asks of us is to rely on him and him alone, lest we succumb to despair and hopelessness. To have recourse to anyone else is doomed to fail. Jesus further cautions us that we might be hated for our faith in HIm and that the days are imminent when brothers turn against each other, parents against child and vice versa.
Nevertheless, it is to those people who stand firm in faith despite all odds, that the Kingdom of God belong. Jesus tells us not to lose hope but to put up with even the worst of tribulations that, at best, last for a while as compared to the heavenly Beatitude that lasts forever.